The Scattering:


This section will deal with some of the results of the breakup of the Holy Ghost and  Us Bible School. 

The first story we'll put forth concerns the re-uniting of Floyd Hastings with his half- brother David 31 years later in 1951.  David and Floyd were the sons of William Hastings

wilhast.jpg (139820 bytes) Mr. William Hastings
November, 1950

who had been one of the "Thirty" who went around the world in 1908 on the Coronet with Mr. Sandford.   It is the break-up and separation of the Hastings family that actually precipitated the dispersion of the 300 or so Kingdom members from the Shiloh hilltop in 1920.   David's mother died, and their grandmother back in Canada sued for custody of David, his three sisters and two younger brothers.  The Androscoggin County Probate Court awarded custody to the Canadian relatives.  The State Children's Protective Society assisted the suit in effectively demonstrating the deplorable living conditions to the court, and the judge of Probate had little choice but to deem Shiloh unfit for children.  The Canadian relatives informed Mr. Hastings that if he would obtain gainful employment and provide for the children's welfare, they would allow the children to stay with him.  Although Mr. William Hastings remained loyal to the cause, the children ultimately remained with their father, who found employment and a rent at Lisbon Falls across the river from Shiloh.   He left the hilltop, together with the children, upon receiving  Mr. Sandford's directives "Work" and "Can Work". 

Three months after leaving Shiloh, Mr. William Hastings married again, to Doris White, whose diary is displayed elsewhere on this website.   Together they had three children, Floyd among them.  According to Shirley Nelson's Fair Clear and Terrible, Mr. Hasting's child rearing skills left something to be desired, and even though all of the children readily accepted Doris as their step-mother, the six children by his first wife drifted away, one by one, as they each matured. 

Below, Floyd has been gracious to offer a portion of his memoirs to the website, and he describes below his first introduction to his half brother David in 1951.


floydsit.jpg (56877 bytes) Floyd Hastings, age 19
March, 1951

Sometime near the beginning of March I had left the Bible Class and returned home. I planned to enlist in the Air Force. Their quota was full, they informed me, so I went over to see the Army Recruiter. At least I would serve three years rather than the Air Force's four years. I had talked with Joe and Roland and they both had liked the Army.  When I told Austin Daggett I was planning to join the Army he decided he wanted to join too.

On March 14, 1951, Austin and I left for Portland for our swearing in, physical and indoctrination. Fort Williams in South Portland had been set up as the induction station for draftees and enlistees. That night they put us all up at the YMCA in Portland. On the sixteenth we would head for the 'Reception Center' at Fort Devens, Massachusetts.

With a free evening I decided to look in the Portland phone directory for brother David's name and telephone number. There it was!  I called and he answered.  I told him it was Floyd and why I was in Portland and that I would like very much to see him. He told me where to get the bus for Woodford's Corner where they lived. Austin also got in some visiting with relatives in South Portland.

I found David and Ethel's apartment and rang the bell. Handsome David Hastings appeared in the doorway! Here was the brother whom I had never seen! We shook hands and he ushered me inside.  His wife, Ethel, was not at home, since she worked evenings as a waitress.   Their daughter Jean, a high school student, was there and sat in on our conversation.  David's son, William, had just been married the previous month to Kay Laskey from Aroostook County. She had been a nurse at Maine General Hospital when Dav1d had had his lung operation in 1949. This was where she and Bill had met. Now Bill was back on active duty, but this time with the Navy. A Lieutenant JG, Bill had been called back to duty when the Korean Conflict broke out.

I don't remember all that Dave and I talked about that evening, but I know we talked about the family.  I told him about Elma, Eva, Edith and Fern and where they lived. The ice had been broken!  Soon after I wrote home about my visit, Fern and Joe went to visit him as well. Then later on David and Ethel visited Elma in South Durham and Eva at her home in Durham. Still later would come a visit to see Mama at our home in Lisbon Falls. Yes not only had the ice been broken healing had now begun.  How happy I was!   How happy we all were!  I know that dear brother David was now feeling a love that he had not felt for a very long time! As I think of it now, forty six, years later, tears come to my eyes. Oh how utterly sad.  Pa had died, never having been reconciled with his beloved son, David.